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Yoga for the heart – Backbends, chanting and Kundalini yoga

My yoga guru Vishva from Rishikesh creates his Yoga classes always around a soecific themeand combines that withphilosophy, mantras, asanas, pranayama, meditation and relaxation within his classes

Like this you go into a real deep practise, incooperate all aspects of Yoga and even take something with you out of the classroom

For my yoga students on Monday, I planned a yoga class for the heart.

In particular, intensive back-bending is practiced to open the heart area. However, this is not possible without a small warm up of the spine and back muscles, so that no injuries occur. We  also chant the “Aham Prema” mantra, integrate a Kundalini sequence for the heart chakra and meditate with the help of the heart mudra..

When the heart opens, the blockages of the Anahata Chakra can loosen and the fourth chakra can rotate freely. Then we can not only give selfless love, but also receive it. This Chakra is about, relationships and feelings and connects the three lower worldly chakras with the three higher spiritual chakras through the intersecting two triangles that symbolise the forces of Shiva and Shakti. We are able to empathize, love, forgive and develop joy of life.

With a blocked heart chakra, we hide into ourselves, create no bonds with others and ourselves, tend to selfishness and become unemotional.

In my heart-opening yoga class, I start singing the mantra “Aham Prema”. It means “I am boundless love”. Here’s the mantra to sing along to.

Both hands can be placed on top of each other on the heart room to feel deep into the heart- right hand above left hand.

Afterwards, the spine should be warmed up. Five light
exercises in the the easy crossed leg seat
are suitable for this purpose in order to use the entire movement of space of the spine.

  • Cat cow in sitting
  • Sidebend
  • Seated twist
  • Backbending
  • Forward bend

All five exercises should be performed gently as a warm-up exercise in both directions for 5 breath each side.

These exercises not only serve to warm up physically, but also release blockages of the chakras, which are located on the main energy Nadi (nerve),the Shushumna, i.e. along the spine. In this way, the energy can flow uninhibitedly through the body.

Everyone comes to Tadasana (Standing) in their own way (perhaps through the Downward facing Dog)). Here we can practice 2-3 rounds of San Salutation for further warming up.

Now the asanas follow in standing:

  • The angel – Feel into the slight back bend and  the balance.

  • Warrior 1 – Be a powerful loving warrior who opens his heart to himself or herself and all living beings.

  • Dynamic Heartbeat Asana with rotation

Use Breathing: When exhaling, you turn to the side, when you inhale you come back to the center. With the opposite hand, you can easily hit the collar bone above the heart. Please never hit the heart area.

  • Asanas in the Prone Position – Cobra

Come first to the Baby Cobra. Then you can practice the King Cobra twice more.

Keep your buttocks engaged and feel in the open chest.

Then lie down on your hands and breathe once on each side with Brahmari (Humming like a bee).

Asanas sitting

  • Seated Twist

Rotation of the spine

Sit on your heels and from here get in Matsyendrasana, the twisted seat. Let the heart find its movement backwards (thoracis area) and only then turn your cervical spine.

  • Boat – Before switching to the other side, practice the boat. Here, too, shine with the heart and open the chest space wide.

  • Camel – Now we should be warm enough for the camel. Practice the little camel first and leave the hands as support at the back. The second time you can get into the full camel if you like.

Camel

  • Child – Then come into the child posture with fists under the navel.

  • Forward bend – Bend forward from the hip with a straight back. This time let your heart shine towards the backside. Open wide here, too.

  • Revolved plane – As a counter-movement, come on hands and feet and lift your pelvis far up. If you don’t have neck problems, leave your head hanging.

From Dandasana  bend one leg and bring the sole of the foot to the inside of the other leg. First, get into:

  • Parivrtta Setu Bandhasana, the heart turns towards the sky/ceiling.

Then turn backwards  with your knee bent forward and stretched back leg. Both hips are side by side and you get into

  • Kabotasana, the pidgeon.

Once with back bend and open chest, once with forward bend, the heart radiates backwards through the back.

With this hip opener, we also activate the sacral chakra and work on our relationships as well. At the same time, we feel with our heart on a spiritual level into the realzion ships and thus solve existing blockages. Breathe deeply. Change the sides.

Asanas in supine position and Inversion

  • Plough/Shoulder Stand/Fish Sequence

From here you get into Halasana, then continue to the shoulder stand. Here the chest space is often severely constricted. Still try to widen the heart space. Through the plough you slowly come back and practice your most beautiful fish.

Open the heart space wide. If you like, you can come into a variation with raised and stretched legs. It is important that you breathe deep into the collarbones, chest and abdomen – the complete yogi breath.

Now we go into the final round:

We practice the bridge and who likes extends into the wheel- both beautiful heart opener!

Now bring your knees to your chest and roll from left to right and back and forward until you come to sitting.

Pavanmuktasana

Kundalini Yoga for the Anahata Chakra

The Anahata Chakra is located in the area of the chest room at heart level. This is symbolized by 12 green lotus leaves that swing in all directions. Two connected triangles are merged into each other, symbolizing the connection of the physical and mental planes.

The Anahata Chakra is assigned the element air and to the sense of touch. The seed mantra is yam.

With intensive inhalation and exhalation through the nose, we will now open our arms far to both sides (inhalation) and lift the chest and, during exhalation, bring our hands towards the heart and round the back a little.

Perform this dynamic exercise rhythmically for 2 minutes with the so-called Bastrika Breathing. Breathing should be heard. (deep inhale and exhale)

Then close your eyes, bring your hands to your heart and chant the mantra yam for 2 more minutes.

Now you put your hands in the heart mudra (ring fingers on the base of the thumb, thumb, index finger and middle finger and spread the little finger off), put the wrists on your knees. The mudra can release pressure from your heart and should also work against heart disease.

Meditate in this posture with concentration on your heart. Imagine the heart chakra figuratively. Feel compassion, universal love and self-love.

Namaste